A List of Inspiring Theology of the Body Fiction: #ShowUsYourList

showusyourlistlogoErin over at “Will Write For Tomato Pie” has a wonderful idea of having bloggers create alternate lists of entertaining books that are true, beautiful and good. Here is her challenge and mine as well!

“I challenge anyone who complained about 50 shades of anything to now spend some time and energy promoting entertainment that is true, beautiful and good.”

I posted about the “Antidote to #50Shades of Degradation: TOB Fiction: over at Amazing Catechists last week. Below is the list of Theology of the Body Fiction that I recommended and continue to recommend as “true, beautiful and good!” (Pardon the self-promotion of my own books and those of my publishing company!)

St. John Paul II said we can “overcome evil with good.” Here is a list of contemporary Catholic novels (in order of publication date) with Theology of the Body themes that can uplift, inspire and serve as an antidote to ALL the secular, trashy novels that promote illicit lifestyles. These novels encourage virtue rather than vice, respect rather than domination, and love rather than lust.

Emily’s Hope (Ellen Gable, 2005, FQ Publishing)

Passport (Christopher Blunt, 2008, Pelican Crossing Press)

Midnight Dancers (Regina Doman, 2008, Chesterton Press)

In Name Only (Ellen Gable, 2009, FQ Publishing)

Stealing Jenny (Ellen Gable, 2011, FQ Publishing)

Finding Grace (Laura Pearl, 2012, Bezalel Books)

Angela’s Song (AnnMarie Creedon, 2012, FQ Publishing)

Rapunzel Let Down (Regina Doman, 2013, Chesterton Press)

Vingede (Friar Tobe #2) (Krisi Keley, 2013, S & H Publishing)

Don’t You Forget About Me (Erin McCole Cupp, 2013, FQ Publishing)

A Subtle Grace (Ellen Gable, 2014, FQ Publishing)

The Lion’s Heart (Dena Hunt, 2014, FQ Publishing)

A World Such as Heaven Intended (Amanda Lauer, 2014, FQ Publishing)

Working Mother (Erin McCole Cupp, 2014, FQ Publishing)

Feast of the Epiphany

On Epiphany Sunday, our family has continued a tradition of reciting a blessing and marking the lintel of every doorway in our home (usually with chalk) indicating the year and the initials of the wise men (Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar): 20 C M B 15. (Photo to the right is from a few years ago!) CMB also stands for Christus Mansionem Benedicat, Latin for “May Christ Bless this House.”

For more information on this beautiful tradition, the following website has some great readings and more information on this beautiful blessing:

7 Quick Takes Friday – Volume 54

7_quick_takes_sm1It’s Friday and time to join up with other Catholic bloggers at Conversion Diary for 7 Quick Takes Friday.

1. Prayer Requests
Please continue to keep Jen from Conversion Diary in your prayers. Also, I’d like to ask readers to pray for fellow CatholicMom contributor, Cassandra Poppe’s son, Fulton. He was severely burned in an accident. Prayers and donations are needed. Here’s the website: http://www.giveforward.com/PrayForFulton

2. Stealing Jenny Reaches 100 Reviews!
My novel, Stealing Jenny, just received its 100th review on Amazon with a 4.3 average ranking! Woo hoo! It was #1 for most of the month of December, has been in the top three for the past week, and in the top ten for the past 18 months.

3. Ellen Gable Author Facebook page
Please consider “liking” my author page. You can either click the link or click the link at the side bar to the right and just below the Stealing Jenny cover photo. There will be weekly free giveaways listed over the next few months and news about upcoming books.

4. Bring Him Home
With the recent release of Les Miserables, I decided to post a video on Facebook of my husband’s moving rendition of “Bring Him Home” (which was recorded nearly four years ago at my surprise 50th birthday concert). Please feel free to take a look and let me know what you think. You need not have a Facebook account to watch the video, although if you want to comment or “like” the video, you’ll need to have a Facebook account.

One of the reasons I wanted to post this video is because “Bring Him Home” is my favorite song of Les Mis. On the whole, I enjoyed Hugh Jackman’s portrayal of Jean Valjean very much, although I was disappointed with his “live” rendition of this particular song.

5. A Subtle Grace
I’ve been busy editing and trying to finish my latest work in progress, A Subtle Grace, the sequel to In Name Only which continues the saga of the O’Donovan Family. I’m specifically writing this book so that it can be read independent of the other, although reading both will give a more complete experience.

A Subtle Grace takes place in 1896 in Philadelphia. Each week during 7 Quick Takes Friday, I’d like to introduce one character from the book. This week: Kathleen O’Donovan, main female protagonist, is the oldest daughter of Caroline (main female protagonist of In Name Only) and her late husband, Liam O’Donovan. At the beginning of the story, Kathleen is 19 years of age and present with her mother as the older woman gives birth to another baby. Kathleen is the oldest of six children (soon-to-be seven children). She is naive, carefree and innocent although an unforeseen circumstance causes her to question everything she has believed about herself and her family.

6. Reading List
The Lion’s Heart by Dena Hunt

7. Cartoon – Skydiving

image copyright FQP - James/Ellen Hrkach

image copyright FQP – James/Ellen Hrkach

Copyright 2013 Ellen Gable Hrkach

Special Cyber Monday Offers

Full Quiver Publishing is offering three deals for Cyber Monday (this Monday, November 28):


Offer #1 Stealing Jenny print edition is available for 6.50 and shipping is free! Usual price is 12.99 plus shipping so that’s less than half-price! Email us at
info @ fullquiverpublishing.com with your address to receive your free book. LIMIT ONE PER FAMILY.

Offer #2 Stealing Jenny Kindle edition is FREE on Monday, November 28th. To receive your free Kindle book, just send your email address to info @ fullquiverpublishing.com.

Offer #3 Buy Stealing Jenny either print or Kindle and receive a FREE PRINT copy of Come My Beloved: Inspiring Stories of Catholic Courtship. To receive your free book ($13.00 value),
send your Amazon order confirmation email to
info @ fullquiverpublishing.com.

Sunday Snippets – October 16

Join me at RAnn’s Place where Catholic bloggers share posts from the previous week. Please check out the other bloggers’ posts!

Here are my contributions for the week:

Working With An Editor, my post for the Catholic Writers Guild blog

Desperate Plea for Help, about our friend’s desperation when his girlfriend was enticed into a cult.

My Relatives Are My Biggest Fans (Photo)

Powerful Weapon The Holy Rosary can be a powerful weapon…

Fiction Friday – Review of Pro Luce Habere

Pregnancy and Infant Loss

Photo copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach

Powerful Weapon

“The holy Rosary is a powerful weapon. Use it with confidence and you’ll be amazed at the results.”
St. Josemaria Escriva

Although I grew up in a Catholic family, I learned how to say the rosary at school. My father often said it in private, but we never recited the rosary as a family and I rarely said the rosary on my own before the age of 11. One evening, however, my parents were involved in a loud (and heated) argument. It was my first experience at being “amazed at the results” of the powerful weapon of the holy rosary. The following is an excerpt from my novel, Emily’s Hope. It’s based on actual events and is a true illustration of Our Lady’s powerful intercession.

I listen as my parents are fighting again, fighting over bills they can’t pay. Each time my mom yells, my dad yells louder. Dad starts to throw things, not at Mom, just throwing things. I’m scared. It makes me feel anxious to see the two people I love most in the world screaming at each other. Don’t they love each other, I ask myself. Why won’t they stop yelling?

Dad just said something about moving out. Oh, God, please, I don’t want my dad to move out. Mom says good. Oh, please, Mom, don’t say that. I look at both of them but they don’t seem to see me or the panic in my eyes. They only glare at each other.

Dad goes upstairs. I run after him and watch as he gets a suitcase out and starts putting clothes in it.

God, why won’t you stop him? I pass by my bedroom and notice my rosary sitting on the bedside table. I grab it, sit down on my bed, and begin saying the rosary. As I say each Hail Mary, I plead with Our Lady, “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.” Please, Our Lady, don’t let my Dad walk out.

As I’m saying another Hail Mary, Dad walks by my room and doesn’t notice that I’m even there. He stomps down the steps. I can’t hear if he says bye, but I hear the door slam shut.

Oh, God, please, make him come back. I continue saying the rosary, each Hail Mary becoming more fervent than the last. I pray until my heart is bursting. Please, God, listen to my prayer.

I begin saying the Hail Holy Queen prayer and suddenly, I hear the door open downstairs. Without finishing, I stand at the top of the stairs and I see that my dad is standing at the doorway. Mom walks over to him. At first, they’re silent.

Then, my dad starts to cry. “I can’t leave you. I can’t leave my family.” He and Mom embrace.

I begin to cry. Thank you, God, and thank you, Our Lady, for bringing my daddy back.

(My parents remained married until my father’s death eight years later. He was buried with his rosary in his hands.) The photo above is of my dad and me taken the summer I turned two years old.

Emily’s Hope is available on Amazon.com.

Text and photo copyright 2011 Ellen Gable Hrkach